Joe Rogan has heard fighters criticize his UFC commentary previously but the latest dig came from the biggest superstar in the sport.
While appearing in Chicago ahead of St. Patrick’s Day this past weekend, Conor McGregor was asked about possibly appearing on Rogan’s podcast one day and that’s when he tore into the veteran color commentator about some of the things he’s said during past fights.
“I’d like him to call a fight how he sees it correctly and not be reading off a script,” McGregor said. “The [Nate] Diaz rematch it was like he was reading from the first fight and that last one, he was talking about my face was being smashed in. I left that Octagon with a black eye, the same way [Khabib Nurmagomedov’s] two rat cousins left. His brother and his cousin left the Octagon with a black eye, so what is he talking about?”
On Tuesday, Rogan heard about McGregor’s criticisms and he responded on his podcast.
“That is not really true because no one ever gives me a script. That’s a fact. I don’t know what exactly he said, maybe he didn’t like my commentary. I bet he likes it when he wins,” Rogan said with a laugh.
“That’s his perception, I understand what he’s saying. Sometimes people think that but it’s very difficult when someone is calling your fight. If he’s talking about me calling someone’s fight that’s not his friend, that makes much more sense. It’s f—king hard. It’s hard for me. I have a really hard time calling friend’s fights. It’s f—king hard.”
Rogan understands the frustration some fighters have over commentary that they perceive to be slighted or one-sided but that is never his intention.
In the case of McGregor’s rematch with Nate Diaz from 2016, Rogan says that he had to acknowledge what happened in the first fight to tell the proper story for the rematch.
“I get his position,” Rogan explained. “That Diaz fight was a good f—king fight. It was a hard fight. I wasn’t calling it like the last fight but I had to call it with the knowledge of the last fight. I had to know what happened in the last fight. In the last fight, Diaz survived the storm, tagged him, had him rocked and then finished him on the ground.
“It doesn’t mean that he didn’t win the second fight. It was a close f—king fight, the second fight was a very close fight but you have to acknowledge that, that other fight took place.”
One point that Rogan made clear is that he has nothing but admiration for McGregor and the work he does both inside and outside the cage. Perhaps one day they’ll get together for a podcast to hash out their differences.
“I don’t know him that well but I like him a lot,” Rogan said about McGregor. “I respect the f—k out of him.”